Here at Caprice Acres, we follow fairly strict biosecurity measures for incoming stock.
First, we try to do as little purchasing of stock as is possible. I doubt we will ever eliminate it, simply because I believe bringing in new stock and new blood is the only way to improve a herd. True 'closed herds' MUST be VERY large to continue to improve their herd and also to prevent drastic inbreeding. I do not know if our herd will ever be big enough to be a closed herd.
That being said, we are careful about where we purchase from. We prefer to purchase from reputable farms that are already disease tested. If this is not possible, we disease test BEFORE we buy and sale is contingent upon negative disease status. All incoming animals go through a strict isolation period before being introduced to the main herd.
When purchasing animals, we do blood ELISAs for CAE and Johnes, and do a blood SHI test for CL. These are done at WADDL. Our routine testing is for CAE and Johnes. We will run CAE at BioTracking with pregnancy tests, or at DCPAH depending on convenience. We run Johnes at WADDL or DCPAH.
Our biosecurity procedure for purchasing goats greater than 6 months of age is:
1. Draw blood and disease test animals of interest while still at seller's farm.
2. If animals come back NEGATIVE, we then purchase them and bring them home, placing them in an ISOLATION PEN. We usually purchase more than one at a time so they have companions while in isolation, or we designate one of our own young male kids to be the 'companion wether'.
3. Incoming animals are vaccinated for CDT. We also deworm as necessary. Usually they are also copper bolused and given BoSe.
4. Animals are isolated for 3 MONTHS, and are monitored at this time for any disease.
5. After 3 months, animals are RETESTED for CL, CAE, and Johnes.
6. If animals come back NEGATIVE, they are introduced to the main herd.
Our biosecurity procedure for purchasing goats LESS THAN 6 months of age is:
1. Purchase from a disease tested herd, from a reputable person, abscess free herd etc.
2. Raise purchased young stock in ISOLATION from the established herd whenever possible. Unfortunately with an odd number of individuals or sexes, this may mean raising a purchased kid in with kids intended to be sold so that no kids are socially isolated during their rearing, which I think is more detrimental and higher risk. I will try to inform buyers if their kids are exposed to/raised with kids born on a different farm, but should I forget to mention please feel free to ask. I am picky about purchased stock and will still follow strict testing protocols which will be posted on my website or made available to inquiring individuals.
3. Incoming animals are vaccinated for CDT. Young stock is raised on cocci prevention using Baycox, Dimethox, or other coccidicides. We also may feed a medicated feed (with a coccidistat, not antibiotic). We also deworm as necessary. Usually they are also copper bolused and given BoSe.
4. Animals are disease tested at 6 months of age for CL, CAE, and Johnes and again with the herd on the normal schedule.
5. Negative animals are introduced to the main herd after their test results come back negative.